The Independent Police Directorate (IPID) has opened an inquest after a suspect was shot and killed, allegedly by police during a robbery at the Jane Furse Police Station in Limpopo.
It is alleged that the suspect entered the police station, disarmed an on-duty police officer, and then held police officers at gunpoint.
The suspect is yet to be identified. IPID Spokesperson Lizzy Mashuping says he was found in possession of drugs.
“IPID is investigating the death of an unknown man who entered the Jane Furse Police Station last night at around 8pm and held the police hostage. The suspect, who is now deceased, allegedly grabbed the firearm from the police officer who was doing his service duties. He pointed the firearm at them and threatened to kill them. One of the SAPS members managed to alert his counterparts. Unfortunately, the suspect passed away. The suspect was found in possession of nyaope.”
Gunshots a normal occurrence
Community members living next to the Jane Furse Police Station have expressed shock at the foiled robbery.
Some residents say the sound of gunshots is a normal occurrence as there are lots of taverns and robberies in the area.
“I heard gunshots. It started on the side of the Chinese shop first but then moved closer to the police station. We are used to hearing these sounds when they rob the tavern and nearby businesses.”
Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance (DA) in Limpopo says police stations have become soft targets for criminals.
DA Spokesperson on Community Safety, Katlego Suzan Phala, says police stations in rural areas do not have resources and lack capacity.